Ford adds options, refinement to 2014 Fiesta
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LOS ANGELES -- Believing that customers increasingly want sophistication even in the smallest cars, Ford Motor Co. will offer the 2014 Fiesta with more refinement and more options in powertrains and infotainment than the 2013 version.
The 2014 will be offered with three engine choices including the three-cylinder, 123 hp 1.0-liter EcoBoost, the latest addition to Ford's growing performance and fuel economy engine brand. Dealers will have to wait until late 2013 for the new Fiesta. Ford is unveiling the 2014 Fiesta here at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
Though Ford is not giving specific fuel economy figures for the 2014 Fiesta, the company is claiming the car powered by the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine will exceed 40 mpg and "is expected to deliver the best fuel economy of any nonhybrid car sold in America."
Ford has restyled the front end of the 2014 Fiesta with the latest version of the trapezoidal grille featured on the 2013 Ford Fusion.
A performance version, the Fiesta ST, also will be offered. The Fiesta ST will join the Focus ST as the latest vehicles to wear the red ST (Sport Technologies) badge. The ST version will be powered by Ford's four-cylinder, 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine that will crank out 197 hp and 214 pounds-feet of torque. It will be combined with a six-speed manual gearbox.
Ford compared the numbers with the Mini Cooper S, which cranks out 181 hp and 177 pounds-feet of torque and the Chevrolet Sonic RS, which gets 138 hp and 148 pounds-feet of torque.
The Mini Cooper comparison points to Ford's upscale aspirations for the Fiesta, which will come with features formerly found mainly in larger cars.
Jim Farley, Ford's global marketing chief, estimated that about 40 percent of the Fiesta mix will have the latest version of the MyFord Touch infotainment system, which comes with a new 6.5-inch screen that the company made smaller to fit its smallest car.
The Fiesta will compete at the higher end of the small-car market, he said. That means no econobox version.
"The Fiesta will be one of the first B cars to offer leather seats," Farley said.
"We're not interested in [competing] in the very low end of the B car market," he said. "We're not going to offer a super price leader, very basic equipped vehicle."
It's no coincidence Ford chose to launch the latest Fiesta at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Los Angeles accounts for 10 percent of all Fiesta sales nationwide, he said. "B cars are only sold in cities. It's that simple. Our growth opportunity as a company is in large metro areas on the coasts."
Initially, Ford will offer the 1.0-liter EcoBoost only with a five-speed manual gearbox. Customers wanting an automatic will be able to buy a normally aspirated four-cylinder, 1.6-liter gasoline engine.
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